1 Note: Sign of the cross = Using your right hand (some people will bunch their thumb, pointer, and middle fingers together to further symbolize the trinity), you should touch your forehead at the mention of the Father; the lower middle of your chest at the mention of the Son; and the left shoulder on the word "Holy" and the right shoulder on the word "Spirit." Before Mass 1. Upon entering, dip finger in holy water and do sign of the cross. The idea is to reaffirm your baptism and cleanse yourself before coming into the presence of Christ. 2. Before entering the pew - i.e. St. Mary = If the tabernacle is present (ornate box holding the Eucharist) then it is customary to genuflect (kneel on one knee briefly) in reverence for Christ present in the Eucharist. - i.e. St. Henry = If the tabernacle is not present (in chapel off to the side) then simply bow toward the altar. 3. Kneel in prayer in the pew using the kneelers Done in silence, the idea is to call to mind your sins and prepare yourself to hear the word of the Lord and receive the holy sacrament. Some people silently recite the following prayer: Receive, O Holy Trinity, One God, this Holy Sacrifice of the Body and Blood of our Lord Jesus Christ, which I, Your unworthy servant, desire now to offer to Your Divine Majesty by the hands of this Your minister, with all the Sacrifices which have ever been or will be offered to You, in union with that most Holy Sacrifice offered by the same Christ our Lord at the Last Supper, and on the Altar of the Cross. I offer it to You with the utmost affection of devotion, out of pure love for Your infinite goodness, and according to the most holy intention of the same Christ our Lord, and of our Holy Mother the Church. O God, almighty and merciful, grant us through this Holy Sacrifice, joy and peace, a holier life, time to do penance, grace and consolation of the Holy Spirit, and perseverance in good works. Amen. When ready, you may be seated in silence until mass begins Mass Opening 1. The cantor will likely invite you to stand for the opening hymn. Do so even if they don t. 2. Remain standing, do the sign of the cross when the priest says In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit then respond Amen 3. The priest will offer one of three greetings to which you respond And with your spirit. 4. The priest may or may not invite the Penitential Act. If he does, he does it by saying, let us acknowledge our sins, and so prepare ourselves to celebrate the sacred mysteries In which you respond: I confess to almighty God and to you, my brothers and sisters,
2 that I have greatly sinned, in my thoughts and in my words, in what I have done and in what I have failed to do, through my fault, through my fault, (with a fist, tap your heart on the word my ) through my most grievous fault; therefore I ask blessed Mary ever-virgin, all the Angels and Saints, and you, my brothers and sisters, to pray for me to the Lord our God. Priest: May almighty God have mercy on us, forgive us our sins, and bring us to everlasting life. Respond: Amen. 5. The Gloria is then either sung or said: Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to people of good will. We praise you, we bless you, we adore you, we glorify you, we give you thanks for your great glory, Lord God, heavenly King, O God, almighty Father. Lord Jesus Christ, Only Begotten Son, Lord God, Lamb of God, Son of the Father, you take away the sins of the world, have mercy on us; you take away the sins of the world, receive our prayer; you are seated at the right hand of the Father, have mercy on us. For you alone are the Holy One, you alone are the Lord, you alone are the Most High, Jesus Christ, with the Holy Spirit, in the glory of God the Father. Amen. 6. The priest says Let us Pray then recites the collect. At the end, respond Amen then be seated.
3 Liturgy of the Word 1. The lector will read a reading. At the end he/she will say The word of the Lord and you respond Thanks be to God. 2. The Psalm (responsorial) is either said or sung. They will usually tell you the proper response first or you can use the hymnal for the appropriate date for the correct response. 3. Sundays have a second reading. Again, the lector will say The word of the Lord and you respond Thanks be to God. 4. When the priest stands, stand too. 5. The Alleluia is sung or chanted 6. The priest (or Deacon) will say The Lord be with you. Respond And with your spirt. 7. The Priest (or Deacon) will say A reading from the holy Gospel according to Make a tiny sign of the cross on your forehead, on your lips, and on your heart while responding Glory to you, O Lord. By doing this, you are saying you will keep the word of the Lord present in your mind, on your lips (evangelize), and in your heart. 8. At the end of the reading, the Priest (or Deacon) will say The Gospel of the Lord and you respond Praise to you, Lord Jesus Christ. Then be seated. 9. The Priest (or Deacon) will then give the homily 10. After the homily the Priest (or Deacon) will sit down. When they stand again, you stand too. 11. The priest will invite everyone to pray the creed. Usually the Nicene creed below: I believe in one God, the Father almighty, maker of heaven and earth, of all things visible and invisible. I believe in one Lord Jesus Christ, the Only Begotten Son of God, born of the Father before all ages. God from God, Light from Light, true God from true God, begotten, not made, consubstantial with the Father; through him all things were made. For us men and for our salvation he came down from heaven (bow) and by the Holy Spirit was incarnate of the Virgin Mary, and became man. (stand upright again) For our sake he was crucified under Pontius Pilate, he suffered death and was buried, and rose again on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures. He ascended into heaven and is seated at the right hand of the Father. He will come again in glory to judge the living and the dead and his kingdom will have no end. I believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the giver of life,
4 who proceeds from the Father and the Son, who with the Father and the Son is adored and glorified, who has spoken through the prophets. I believe in one, holy, catholic and apostolic Church. I confess one Baptism for the forgiveness of sins and I look forward to the resurrection of the dead and the life of the world to come. Amen 12. The priest will invite the Prayers of the Faithful (petitions) 13. The lector or Deacon will tell you what response to give. If they don t it will likely be Lord, hear our prayer. The usual signal for the response is We pray to the Lord. 14. Following the petitions, the priest will close it out then everyone can be seated. Liturgy of the Eucharist 1. Usually, a hymn will be sung during the offertory. The offertory includes passing baskets for tithing, bringing the gifts (money, wine, bread) to the priest, then the priest getting stuff ready 2. The priest will hold up the bread and say, Blessed are you, Lord God of all creation, for through your goodness we have received the bread we offer you: fruit of the earth and work of human hands, it will become for us the bread of life. To which you respond Blessed be God forever 3. The priest will hold up the wine and say, Blessed are you, Lord God of all creation, for through your goodness we have received the wine we offer you: fruit of the vine and work of human hands, it will become our spiritual drink To which you respond Blessed be God forever 4. The priest does/says some more stuff then washes his hands. When he s done washing his hands, stand. 5. The priest says, Pray, brethren, that my sacrifice and yours may be acceptable to God, the almighty Father. To which you respond May the Lord accept the sacrifice at your hands for the praise and glory of his name, for our good and the good of all his holy Church. 6. The following P being priest and R being you: P. The Lord be with you. R. And with your spirit. P. Lift up your hearts. R. We lift them up to the Lord. P. Let us give thanks to the Lord our God. R. It is right and just. 7. The priest continues It is truly right Through Christ our Lord to which you respond Amen 8. The Holy, Holy (Sanctus) is said or sung Holy, Holy, Holy Lord God of hosts. Heaven and earth are full of your glory. Hosanna in the highest. Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord. Hosanna in the highest. 9. Then kneel. 10. The priest tells the story of the last supper then says or sings The mystery of faith. Then one of three responses are said or sung. You can figure out which after he or the cantor starts the first couple words:
5 We proclaim your Death, O Lord, and profess your Resurrection until you come again. Or: When we eat this Bread and drink this Cup, we proclaim your Death, O Lord, until you come again. Or: Save us, Savior of the world, for by your Cross and Resurrection you have set us free. 11. The priest then continues Therefore, O lord, Through him, and with him, and in him, O God, almighty Father, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, all glory and honor is yours, for ever and ever. To which you respond or sing Amen then stand. 12. The priest says, At the Savior s command and formed by divine teaching, we dare to say to which you respond with the Our Father (most churches in our Diocese including ours join hands): Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name; thy kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us; and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. 13. The priest says Deliver us, Lord, we pray, from every evil, graciously grant peace in our days, that, by the help of your mercy, we may be always free from sin and safe from all distress, as we await the blessed hope and the coming of our Savior, Jesus Christ To which you respond with the Doxology: For the kingdom, the power and the glory are yours now and forever. 14. The priest says, Lord Jesus Christ, who said to your Apostles: Peace I leave you, my peace I give you; look not on our sins, but on the faith of your Church, and graciously grant her peace and unity in accordance with your will. Who live and reign for ever and ever. To which you respond Amen 15. The priest says The peace of the Lord be with you always. To which you respond And with your spirit. 16. The priest will say, Let us offer each other the sign of peace. To which you shake hands with people around you and telling them Peace be with you. 17. Lamb of God is either said or sung by all: Lamb of God, you take away the sins of the world, have mercy on us. Lamb of God, you take away the sins of the world, have mercy on us. Lamb of God, you take away the sins of the world, grant us peace. Then kneel using kneelers
6 18. Priest will say one of two prayers ending with Behold the Lamb of God, behold him who takes away the sins of the world. Blessed are those called to the supper of the Lamb to which you respond, Lord, I am not worthy that you should enter under my roof, but only say the word and my soul shall be healed 19. People will orderly come up to receive the host. If you are not Catholic, you may either remain in the pew and go up with your hands crossed over your chest to receive a blessing. Don t take the Eucharist if you re not Catholic. Upon returning to your seat, kneel again and feel free to join in the hymn again. 20. Remain kneeling until the Eucharist is returned to the tabernacle and closed and/or until the priest is finished cleaning up. Then be seated. Closing 1. There might be some announcements. 2. The priest will stand and say Let us pray. Stand too. 3. The priest will give a short prayer, respond Amen 4. The priest will say The Lord be with you respond And with your spirt 5. The priest will say May almighty God bless you, the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit. While you do the sign of the cross. Then respond Amen 6. The priest or deacon will say one of four sentences starting with Go. Respond Thanks be to God. 7. Stay standing and sing the hymn. When it is done, - If there is a tabernacle up front, genuflect - No tabernacle up front, bow 8. You can now leave. Many like to bless themselves with holy water and the sign of the cross on the way out too, but it s not necessary.